Category > VABook08

The last ones to leave the party

I was just getting comfortable at last night’s Authors’ Reception when the caterers corked the wine and disappeared the casseroles and the party volunteers began nudging us toward the exits. Disappointed that the hobnobbing had come to an end, I gathered my things and stuck some silver into my purse (just kidding, Casteen), prepared to [...]

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Book Festival book reading controversy about books!

Today The Biological Imperative devotes an entire blog post to a stupid question asked by a bald man at a book reading. And I am glad. It was a silly question and it deserves to be ridiculed on the blogs. The set-up: Last night the blind professor, Selvi, and I threw back a few drinks [...]

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Ponderous essays, paraphrased

Because I’ve been sick, I’ve only had the energy to bookmark what I would normally blog about. I am feeling stronger today, but the thought of posting anything lengthy makes my Streptococcus flare up. So here are some links – insert writerly charisma where appropriate: 1) Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris [...]

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Advice to VA Festival of the Book authors from a local gal

Seriously, writers. How psyched are you to be coming to Charlottesville, Virginia? Can you believe the Festival is almost here, practically on top of us, like the imminent eruption of a volcano? Can you believe that in just TWO WEEKS you will be consorting with local people and students in a sedate, literary atmosphere? Can [...]

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Local lit talent neglected at this year’s book festival

This year the Virginia Festival of the Book assembled, as usual, a spectacular forum of literary luminaries from all over the world. Unfortunately the festival recruiters inadvertently overlooked a handful of Charlottesville authors. Here are the local writers who I think deserve to be featured in the festival next year. Recruiters, take note.* 1. Daniel [...]

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If you are remotely unstable, do not read this book

Justin Evans did not write A Good and Happy Child for mentally unhinged readers. Before you read this thriller, you need to be sound in mind and body, otherwise the book will mess you up. If you have graduated, like me, from your psychological helper person, or you never needed one to begin with, then [...]

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The bookshelf philosophy of mine, mine, mine, keep out

Today I feel compelled to weigh in on the vital blogworld debate over which books you are ethically allowed to display on your bookshelf. On one side you have the people who believe you should display only the books that you have read cover to cover. On the other side you have the folks who [...]

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A book review of The Ministry of Special Cases in four parts

1. A SYNOPSIS OF NATHAN ENGLANDER’S THE MINISTRY OF SPECIAL CASES Your only son was probably drugged and thrown out of an airplane. And yet you know you will never see a confirming body, because it’s disappeared with the rest of the victims of Argentina’s Dirty War. And your wife alternatively visits morgues, searching for [...]

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I’m a blogger, but I also have feelings and wisdoms

I am facing my first big blogging dilemma. I am reviewing Nathan Englander’s debut novel, The Ministry of Special Cases, because Englander is coming to town for the Virginia Festival of the Book and when he arrives I want all my friends to be ready with erudite questions and posters for him to autograph. The [...]

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The Virginia Festival of the Book is ready to kick some ass

I’ve been browsing this year’s crop of authors on the Virginia Festival of the Book’s webpage, and the list makes me proud to live in Charlottesville. Yes, C-Ville already has bragging rights for being home to the University of Virginia, Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, and that after-hours diner that serves a hamburger with a fried egg [...]

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